Unannounced pop-ins are par for the course at many student apartments near UTK. College students may be busy, but they also tend to go with the flow. And in a moment's notice, a casual invite to one person can grow into a large gathering at your home.
It's customary to tidy up your home for guests or parental visits, which sounds easier said than done when you only have 30 minutes before their arrival. But no matter how unannounced your company, you’ll be fine if you just take a breath, relax, and follow these tips to clean your apartment fast and easy.
Some of these tips seem as though they cut corners — they do. However, when you're in a rush, your priority isn't to make the whole apartment sparkle; it’s to make only certain areas hospitable by tidying up strategically. Because whatever you don’t get cleaned up today can always be dealt with after your guests have left.
While the three-floored apartments at Knox Ridge distinguish the off campus apartment community from typical student housing in Knoxville, having such a large volume of space gives you lots of options for where to clean.
With a whole Saturday and your roommates's help, you could tidy up every room. But when you have just a few minutes to get the place ready, concentrate on the areas guests will use.
Just because your apartment has four or five bathrooms doesn't mean they all have to be cleaned at once. Designate one of them as the guest bathroom and go over it thoroughly.
Spray the toilet and sink with scrubbing bubbles. While you let them work their magic, put out guest towels and extra toilet paper. If your guests are expected to stay overnight or swim in the pool or lazy river, they may need to shower. In that case, you should clean the tub, as well. But if not, just close the shower curtain tightly (life hack!) and hope nobody sneaks past it to discover the gang of soap scum.
When the scrubbing bubbles have simmered, wipe down the surfaces with paper towels, throw away the waste, and take out the trash; but don't forget to replace the bag.
In our off campus housing near UTK, residents have a game and entertainment room (first floor) as well as a living room (second floor). You probably don’t have time to clean both rooms, so focus on whichever one you expect to spend the most time with your guests.
Grab a laundry basket and collect items on the floor, including everything from shoes to textbooks. You can return these to their rightful places later. But for now, hide the basket out-of-sight in your bedroom closet.
Run the vacuum over the floor rugs. Use the long extension to clean between the couch cushions, but first check for loose change. Most vacuums can handle the hard floor surface throughout the rest of the apartment. To be sure you picked up all the dust and grime, follow the vacuum with a mop or wet cloth.
If you don’t consider the kitchen to be a social place, think again. Based on time spent there, the kitchen is the central hub for socializing in most homes and student apartments. But no one wants to hang out in the company of dirty dishes or half-eaten food remnants.
Place discardable food items in the trash. Non-perishable foods can be returned to the cabinet, but beware of mixing up your roommates snacks for fear of instigating food wars.
Anything that can go into the dishwasher should go there. But wait to run the dishwasher until your friends have left, as it can be noisy. Putting dirty dishes into the sink is only a half measure, as they remain in sight. If the dishwasher is full, emptying it will take only a few minutes. And you’ll have freshly cleaned silverware and cups if your get-together turns into a dinner date.
Most of the time, you'll be fine closing the door to your bedroom. But when friends or family stay overnight, you'll need to clean there, too.
The quickest way to make a bedroom appear tidy is to make the bed. You could do it the lazy way: pulling the top comforter over the rumpled sheets underneath. But assuming guests will use your bed, make the effort to tuck in all the sheets.
Organize study materials on your desk as best as you can. In this case, the objective isn't just to make that space look presentable — you also want to prevent any notes or homework from becoming crumpled or lost. To protect important books and papers, keep them in your backpack in the closet.
It's much easier to power clean your apartment when you have the supplies ready to be put to use. Here's how to get yourself ready for unanticipated guests.
Ostensibly, it makes sense to keep cleaning products in the room where you'll use them: toilet bowl cleaner in the bathroom; oven cleaner in the kitchen. But that raises the possibility that they'll be mixed up with other items or forgotten about. Besides, many products are multi-surface cleaners. And where’s the rightful place for accessories, such as gloves, sponges, and rags?
A better idea for cleaning products is to store them in a shower caddy. Most students who moved to student apartments in Knoxville from the UTK dorms will have a shower caddy to spare now that they have private bathrooms. Why not use the caddy to tote around your cleaning supplies? That way, no matter where you're cleaning, the right products are on-hand.
Aromas can influence our moods and behavior. Make the place smell fruity, oceany, or flowery, and people will be more inclined to relax and enjoy themselves. Good scents can even help to mask the bad odors, like from that pile of dirty laundry you hid in the closet five minutes earlier.
One way to keep your apartment smelling nice is to stock up on scented plug-ins. You can go with the discount nightlight-style ones sold at the grocery store, or upgrade to a quality wax melter or diffuser for scented oils. Notice we didn't recommend candles. That's because fires and rowdy college kids don’t always get along. Candles work fine for quiet dinners with friends. But anything wilder than that deserves the added safety of scented plug-ins.
We told you all you need to know about cleaning your student apartment. Now it's time to find one. Knox Ridge is the premier off campus student housing near UTK. We have furnished units, luxury amenities, and a student-friendly location near campus and downtown Knoxville. Call us to schedule a tour!